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Fire door left wedged open

What happened

During a routine visit to a vessel in port, it was noticed that the Class A fire door for the laundry was intentionally wedged open with a wooden block.

Investigation revealed that the crew working in the laundry room had to wedge the door open to get the job done, but when the job was complete, the door wedge was left in place.

What went wrong

  • There was no thorough risk assessment nor toolbox talk carried out; it had not been identified that the door had to be wedged open.
  • The site was not inspected once the job was completed – the fire door was left wedged open.


  • If any safety systems need to be deactivated or disabled for the purpose of a job or task, this should be clearly noted and discussed in the risk assessment, and control measures applied accordingly;
  • Job sites should be inspected once all work is completed to ensure that all deactivated or disabled safety systems are restored and working properly;
  • IMCA notes that consideration ought be given at the design stage to ensuring that jobs and tasks, so far as is reasonably practicable, can be undertaken without deactivating or disabling safety controls.

Members may wish to refer to:

Safety Event

Published: 10 January 2022
Download: IMCA SF 01/22

Relevant life-saving rules:
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